Buy Tickets From the 2013-2014 Season: Taming of the Shrew and Timon of Athens (January Repertory) Playing January 02, 2014 to January 26, 2014
The Taming of the Shrew
$15 General Admission Preview January 4
Performances January 5, 10, 12, 16, 18, 24, 26
Directed by Jeff Watkins
This tale of the fiery and highly comedic romance of Kate and Petruchio still entertains after 400+ years but the debate still stands: just who tames whom?Join the cast and crew members for a lively Question and Answer session on Sunday January 12 after the show!
Timon of Athens
$15 General Admission Preview Thursday January 2, 2014
Performances January 3, 9, 11, 17, 19, 23, 25, 2014
Directed by Drew Reeves
"We have seen better days". - (Act IV, Scene II).
Timon is a wealthy Athenian noble who responds to flattery by hosting banquets, giving gifts and bailing out his suitors. When his fortune runs out and his friends reject his pleas for help, he becomes an embittered recluse and, after seeing that those who abandoned him suffer, withdraws to die.
Money: it can’t buy love, but it can certainly promote hate.
Timon of Athens may be a simple story about a generous and self-indulgent man driven to misanthropy by his fair-weather friends, but it produces an avalanche of philosophical questions: Does Timon deserve our compassion for shunning society and condemning/contaminating the very people he once called friends? Does he deserve to be punished for his vanity and ostentation or is he right to expect more from his parasitic friends? Is there a place for cynicism in society? Watch and Decide.
A part of The Shakespeare Evolution Series!
Read the Plot Synopsis
THE TAMING OF THE SHREW synopsis
By Drew Reeves
Lucentio and his servant, Tranio, arrive in Padua to experience the city’s arts and culture. Soon after their arrival they witness Baptista Minola, a very rich man, negotiating with suitors for the hand of his youngest daughter, Bianca. Baptista will not allow Bianca to be married until his oldest daughter, Katherine, is wed, yet Katherine is considered by all to be a ‘shrew’, an ill-tempered woman prone to violence towards others. Baptista invites the suitors to find tutors for his daughters to help win favor. Lucentio falls in love with Bianca, and decides to disguise himself as a tutor so he can get closer to her, while Tranio will disguise himself as Lucentio to distract Baptista and negotiate a monetary agreement for the hand of Bianca.
Petruchio arrives with his servant Grumio, seeking to find a wealthy woman to wed. He goes to his good friend Hortensio, who is one of Bianca’s suitors, and he tells Petruchio of Katherine. Petruchio agrees to wed Katherine, and Hortensio plans to disguise himself as a tutor so he can get closer to Bianca.
Petruchio meets Katherine and a battle of wit and strong wills ensues. He tells Baptista he will marry her, and they agree upon the dowry. Baptista then tells ‘Lucentio’ (the disguised Tranio) that he can marry Bianca if he can prove that his father will assure him of his inheritance. Tranio decides he has to find someone to pretend to be Lucentio’s father, Vincentio.
Petruchio is late to his agreed upon wedding day, and when he finally arrives, he and his servant are dressed and behave in a very odd manner. This continues through the wedding, and he finally forcibly takes Kate away before the wedding feast.
Petruchio and Kate arrive at his house in Verona, and he begins treating his servants in the same manner Kate was earlier treating the suitors and him. For several days, he denies her food, new clothes, and behaves in a very erratic manner. He finally agrees that they will return to Padua to see her father. On the road home, Kate disagrees with Petruchio, and she finally begins to understand his behavior.
Meanwhile, back in Padua, Lucentio has revealed who he really is to Bianca, she falls for him, and they secretly marry, which they are able to do because Tranio as ‘Lucentio’ has brought in a fake father ‘Vincentio’. The real Vincentio arrives with Kate and Petruchio, and all of the deceptions are exposed, but it is too late, Lucentio and Bianca are married.
All then gather for a wedding feast with three married couples (Hortensio has married a wealthy widow who also proves to be a ‘shrew’). Petruchio bets with the other men that his wife is the most obedient, and Kate wins the bet when she delivers a speech about a woman’s duty to her husband and a man’s duty to his wife.
TIMON OF ATHENS synopsis
The merchants and artisans of Athens are gathered around Timon’s house, including a poet and a painter who have created works specifically for him to purchase. Timon is a wealthy Athenian, and everyone knows he spends and gives his wealth extravagantly. When he arrives the merchants and artisans all flatter him to gain his business, and the lords flatter him for gifts. Lords offer gifts to him knowing he will give them back much more in gifts and money. Apemantus, a philosopher, arrives and begins insulting everyone. His insults, however, do speak to the truth of the overly generous Timon and the shallow flatterers. Alcibiades arrives, and is the only person to greet Timon warmly. Timon invites all into his house for a feast.
At the feast, Timon provides food and wine to all, and has hired dancing girls to entertain them. In addition, Timon continues to give gifts and money as he proclaims them all his friends. Only Apemantus and Alcibiades refuse his gifts. Apemantus has brought his own food and drink and continues to rudely comment on the whole situation. Flavius, Timon’s faithful Steward, is worried for his master because he’s starting to run out of money.
Flavius has tried to protect Timon by borrowing from wealthy Senators. They become concerned with his extravagance and begin sending their servants to collect the debts. Flavius tries to keep them at bay, but ultimately must confess to Timon that he is now broke. Timon sends to his friends for help, and to collect debts owed to him, but they all refuse.
Meanwhile, in the Senate, a friend of Alcibiades is being put to death. Alcibiades pleads for the life of his friend. The Senators refuse to acquiesce and banish Alcibiades from Athens. Before he leaves he vows to take vengeance on Athens for the wrongs done to him and others.
Timon invites the lords who have denied their assistance to another feast. When the dishes are uncovered they contain water instead of food. Timon goes into a rage, chases off the lords, and burns down his house. He leaves Athens to live in the woods and renounces wealth and the society of men. Flavius and Timon’s other servants are now without a home or a job. Flavius splits all of the money he has among the others and vows to remain true to Timon.
Timon is now living alone in a cave. He spends his time digging for roots to eat. While digging, he discovers buried gold and is once again a wealthy man. He denounces wealth as an evil that will destroy society.
Alcibiades, accompanied by two prostitutes, happens by on his way to attack Athens. He tries to talk to Timon, but Timon rejects his friendship. Timon gives him gold which he takes to pay his soldiers.
Apemantus comes seeking Timon because he has heard that Timon affects his manners. He offers Timon food but Timon refuses it with curses. He observes that Timon never knew the middle of humanity, but had only lived at the extremes. The two misanthropes fall into an exchange of insults. As Apemantus leaves, three thieving soldiers arrive. Timon freely gives them gold so they no longer have to be thieves, which drives at least one of them from his wicked ways.
Flavius comes in next. His compassion moves Timon, but in the end Timon still drives him away. Next the Poet and Painter come in because they’ve heard of Timon’s new found wealth. Timon drives them away. Two Senators come to ask Timon’s aid in turning back Alcibiades attack. Timon drives them away.
The Senators take the news back to Athens that Timon has refused his aid. They prepare for Alcibiades attack.
A soldier happens upon Timon’s hole, and finds him dead. Timon has written his own epitaph on a gravestone, but the soldier cannot read. He makes a wax inscription and takes it to Athens.
Alcibiades and his army are before the gates of Athens. The soldier brings news of Timon’s death, and Alcibiades reads his epitaph. He reconciles with Athens, but vows to heal the city of its shallow ways.
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Bardometer RatingHow difficult is this Shakespearean play to grasp? On a scale of 1 to 10.
What does rating this mean?
These are plays you may have read in high school or college. The plot is fairly uncomplicated, though some of the themes may be dense or dark. These plays may include supernatural elements, straight-forward politics, historical content or religious content. (In these cases, we offer a synopsis with important historical or contextual explanations which you may read in the Playbill before the show.) In these plays, there may also be bawdy language and certain adult situations, and the language may be hard to follow for a first-timer.
We recommend this type of play to High School and College Students, casual theatre-goers, people who like mainstream films and reading “The Onion”, and Shakespeare lovers who enjoy delving into the Elizabethan world.
How to prepare for seeing this kind of play: You may wish to read the synopsis we provide (and maybe your notes from Literature Class). Or simply do a small amount of internet research. No worries – you won’t get lost.
Performances this Season
- Charles Dickens’ A Christmas CarolPerformances begin December 05, 2013
- Taming of the Shrew and Timon of Athens (January Repertory)Performances begin January 02, 2014
- The Romance Repertory: The Taming of the Shrew, Romeo and Juliet, Much Ado About NothingPerformances begin January 31, 2014
- MacbethPerformances begin April 05, 2014
- The Comedy of ErrorsPerformances begin May 10, 2014
- Antony and CleopatraPerformances begin June 07, 2014